Pacific Green is making its mark on a global battery energy storage system (BESS) market that is projected to rise to $7 billion in 2024. Already a major developer in the UK, the company is expanding across Italy, Poland, Spain and Australia, with a global eye on other nascent, exciting markets.

The company’s first operational BESS assets at Richborough Energy Park have demonstrated excellent performance since starting commercial operations in December 2023, consistently achieving in excess of 99% availability.

Richborough Energy Park will soon be joined by other schemes as Pacific Green doubles down on BESS this year, having developed a global pipeline of 6 GWh and a target of securing 12 GWh of battery energy storage across four countries in 2024.

Pacific Green’s acquisition of a 500 MW, 2.8 GWh pipeline in Italy and a further 1 GW and 2.5 GWh of battery capacity in Australia is indicative of this commitment.

Construction on the first Australian project, Limestone Coast, is due to start following financial close in the second half of 2024 and the project is set to become operational in 2026.

When completed, the 500 MW, 1.5 GWh Limestone Coast energy park will be one of the largest battery projects in Australia, with enough capacity to store 60% of South Australia’s residential solar output for up to four hours. The energy park will be located next to a substation 10 kilometres outside of the city of Mount Gambier. It will connect into established transmission infrastructure with virtually no impact on the local landscape and communities.

In addition, Pacific Green has plans for four 250-MW energy parks in Portland, Victoria, adding another gigawatt and 2.5 GWh of capacity to Australia’s energy storage market. The Portland Energy Park, covering approximately 30 hectares, will be close to Portland’s aluminium smelter and water treatment plant, both of which are huge consumers of energy.

This means it can be easily integrated into existing industrial electrical infrastructure, which includes a 500/33 kV collector, a 500 kV terminal station and a grid connection to a 500 kV transmission line.

Less than half a decade ago, the largest battery system in the world—the Hornsdale Power Reserve in South Australia—had just 150 MW and 194 MWh of capacity, or less than a seventh of the energy storage being planned for Limestone Coast.

Even today, Limestone Coast is not that far off the world’s largest battery storage project, Moss Landing in the US, which was expanded to 750 MW and 3 GWh of capacity in 2023.

Producing gigawatt-hour-scale battery projects is impressive for a company that is only just starting out in Australia, but Pacific Green has a pedigree when it comes to large schemes.

Richborough Energy Park, was small by Limestone Coast standards, weighing in at just under 100 MWh—but that still made it one of the biggest battery plants of its kind in the UK when it was connected to the grid. In 2022, the average UK battery project had just 36 MWh of capacity.

Pacific Green’s second UK project, the 249 MW, 373.5 MWh Sheaf Energy Park, currently under construction next to the Richborough site in Kent, compares favourably to the five largest projects in the country as listed by GlobalData.

Pacific Green is looking to use its industry-leading know-how not just in the UK and Australia but also in a growing number of European markets.

Foremost among these is Italy, where Pacific Green has acquired a majority stake in five 100 MW battery energy parks from originator Sphera Energy. Furthermore, Pacific Green is moving to acquire a handful of similar-sized projects located in the South and Central South regions to diversify the portfolio.

This targeted approach provides Pacific Green with a natural hedge to site-specific risk across several regions in North, South and Central South. The projects are planned to see commercial operation starting throughout 2026, bringing circa 1GW and 4GWh of capacity to the Italian grid.

In Poland, meanwhile, Pacific Green is targeting an initial pipeline of approximately 400 MWh of storage capacity.

Pacific Green can confidently scale and remain at the forefront of the energy storage sector thanks to unparalleled expertise, strategic funding partners, strong ties with the Chinese battery supply chain and a proven project structure tailored to local market requirements, as perfected through the delivery of its projects in the UK.

The Pacific Green team has many years of experience in commercialising pioneering technologies that make a positive environmental impact and deliver robust returns to investors.

The company’s technology experts have cutting-edge skills from multiple engineering and scientific disciplines, while the senior team has cross-sector experience in markets ranging from energy storage, generation and transmission to emissions control.

This technology expertise is combined with a formidable track record of financial innovation and infrastructure development that includes:

  • Assembling a team with experience in steering major international energy and infrastructure projects through financing and development.

  • Taking a rigorous approach to vetting opportunities and creating efficiency through thorough due diligence.

  • Leading non-recourse debt project financing for BESS developments.

The company has also cultivated strategic relationships with trusted partners at all levels of the global environmental technology supply chain. With a presence in China, Pacific Green benefits from access to the best technology and manufacturing capabilities on offer.

This hands-on partnership approach ensures timely delivery of critical equipment, even when global supply chains are stretched—as was the case when the Richborough Energy Park was developed. At the same time, Pacific Green has built robust relationships with internationally respected financial institutions.

The company has partnered with major financial institutions including the UK Investment Bank and works directly with leading global energy market players such as Shell and SSE. All these factors mean Pacific Green is well equipped to deliver world-beating projects at a scale that few other developers can match.

Publish date: 15 May, 2024